Our dispensary, a dispensary for all

The Canossian sisters have been in Togo for several years, with a hospital in Dacha and a mission in Agoè. The mission, located 20 km from the capital city of Lome includes:

  • - The community of Canossian Sisters
  • - A retreat center
  • - A professional school for girls
  • - The VOICA community, named "Yayra", which strives every day in faith and joy to meet the needs of many people..

The two communities are active on many fronts: to help this sick pay for doctor's visits, lab work, medications, and operations; to pay school fees and buy books for students who can not afford it; to fund groups of women to start small businesses; and other activities to promote human and social growth.

Given the incredible insufficiency of local hospitals, their remoteness, and their cost, in 2003 VOICA planned the construction of a health center within their mission. The project, initially conceived as a small dispensary, has gradually expanded to its current, much larger structure, and is approved and recognized by the Togolese Ministry of Health. The expansion was necessary because we discovered so many needs in the area, including assistance to terminal AIDS patients, the rehydration of malnourished children, wound dressing, etc. The goal has always been to offer a dignified environment to receive primary care, to make doctor's visits, attend to wounds, and do lab work. It is a place where less critical patients can be kept for observation, where women can receive care during pregnancy, where problems can be shared. All activities revolve around the people, who need to learn prevention concerning malaria, intestinal parasites or AIDS; who must be vaccinated against polio, meningitis and tetanus; who should give birth in hygienic conditions; who must receive treatment for lesions or sores and who need dental care.

In the past year, VOICA has decided to equip the dispensary with a surgical unit, to provide basic, free health care can increasingly meet the needs of the poor. Thanks to the skills and professionalism of Prof. Antonio Butti (surgeon) and Dr. Alessandra Alessandri (anesthesiologist) and the economic support of Luconlus, the goal is to provide the St. Josephine Bakhita Social Medical Center with a suitable surgical structure meeting Western standards for care and services.